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monsoon

Dallas vs Atlanta

Which is the better Metro?  

178 members have voted

  1. 1. Which is the better Metro?

    • Atlanta
      103
    • Dallas
      75


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These two Southern Metros would seem to be very similar. (Population, economics, growth rate, etc) Which is doing a better job at the types of things we find important here for an urban area to have? Limiting sprawl, mass transit, job creation, pollution, racial divisions, regional cooperation, and sustainability all come to mind.

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Anybody know the transit plans in Dallas? I know they have the commuter rail connecting Ft. Worth with Dallas. Atlanta does have Marta so that would seem to put them ahead. My impression of both is that they're sprawling messes of suburbia though. Should be good, but I find that Dallas is usually underrepresented on urban forums. Maybe that's a sign that Dallas isn't ready for urbanism.

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DART (Dallas Area Rapic Transit) has two functional LRT lines. This map also contains its expansion plans.

post-292-1111970589_thumb.jpg

It also has an HRT line that connects Dalls to Fort Worth:

post-292-1111971371_thumb.jpg

I can't determine if Fort Worth has any separate rail service, but I would assume it does not.

Atlanta has its HRT system: MARTA

post-292-1111970881_thumb.jpg

And it has substantial expansion plans for a loop line:

AtlantaBlines.jpg

Its hard for me to vote one way or the other because I don't know about Dallas's plans for TOD or other info. You can't base everything on rail :) Does anyone out there know about Dallas's plans?

post-292-1111970589_thumb.jpg

post-292-1111970881_thumb.jpg

post-292-1111971371_thumb.jpg

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I honestly don't know. Both are booming sunbelt cities. Both have decent rail transit options. Both are landlocked and sprawling in every direction. At this time, the only difference I can think of, is that Dallas is larger and has a denser city core, although I don't know if its vibrant or not. I think I'll sit back and watch on this one.

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Ill' go with Atl on this one only because i know very little about dallas, but i do kno that Atl downtown population is around 30,000 people in 3.4 square miles . And Dallas has around 3,100 people liveing in a downtown area of 1.3 square miles. But Dallas has 27,000 people live in the outer Downtown neighborhoods Uptown, Deep Ellum, Bryan Place, The Cedars to name a few.

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Both are southern regional business centers and sunbelt boomtowns with Dallas being a bit larger than Atl. Both have a tonss of infill developments, new urbanist projects and increasing density.

I don't think either one is doing better: they both pretty much have a lot of good things going on right now.

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The trinity line in dallas is Heavy rail or Commuter rail?

And just out of curiousity, how do either connect to the airport? It doesn't look like the Trinity line goes directly to the airport. I think marta does, but how easy is it to use for that purpose?

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MARTA connects to the airport, but DO NOT rely on this to get you on time to your flight. I missed a flight b/c the train was taken out of service while en route to the airport delaying my arrival at Hartsfield by 20 minutes.

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The trinity line in dallas is Heavy rail or Commuter rail?

And just out of curiousity, how do either connect to the airport?  It doesn't look like the Trinity line goes directly to the airport.  I think marta does, but how easy is it to use for that purpose?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Its appears to be more of a commuter rail. Maybe someone from Dallas can clarify that for us?

Their website says that Trinity connects to the airport- I assume this is via a bus. Clearly the train doesn't go to the airport itself.

MARTA actually has a stop at the airport (see the southern most stop on the map I posted). I have used this one before- you actually get out of the train and walk into into the baggage claim area.

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Its appears to be more of a commuter rail. Maybe someone from Dallas can clarify that for us?

Their website says that Trinity connects to the airport- I assume this is via a bus. Clearly the train doesn't go to the airport itself.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

The Trinity is commuter rail. It connects to DFW airport via shuttle bus. Union Station in downtown Dallas connects it to the light rail lines and houses amtrak and greyhound stations

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Its appears to be more of a commuter rail. Maybe someone from Dallas can clarify that for us?

Their website says that Trinity connects to the airport- I assume this is via a bus. Clearly the train doesn't go to the airport itself.

MARTA actually has a stop at the airport (see the southern most stop on the map I posted). I have used this one before- you actually get out of the train and walk into into the baggage claim area.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

As a Dallas resident, I can speak about this...

Indeed, Trinity is commuter rail, and right now, the only connection from the TRE to DFW airport is via bus. DART does have plans to extend a light rail line directly to the airport, but it's going to be at least 5-6 years before that rail line is completed (if not longer).

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I think MARTA is initially more impressive as it is a traditional heavy rail subway system and a couple of its stations are notible for being unique. But that is about it there. There appears to be no support for expanding MARTA to serve more of the population, and the vast majority of the metro simply does not use it.

On the otherhand DART in Dallas, while just light rail, is being expanded and is meeting with a great deal of success as being considered an asset to the city in the mids of the people. Dallas is at least trying to implement rail transit in a way that benefits the city and is finding the funding to do so.

I've ridden on both systems and I say that I prefer DART over MARTA.

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As a Dallas resident, I can speak about this...

Indeed, Trinity is commuter rail, and right now, the only connection from the TRE to DFW airport is via bus.  DART does have plans to extend a light rail line directly to the airport, but it's going to be at least 5-6 years before that rail line is completed (if not longer).

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Welcome to the forum!

I think the light rail to the airport is essential. I noticed that line from DART that will connect to the airport. However, I think it would be effecient for the Trinity line to connect to the airport somehow as well.

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So I'd call transit a toss up, maybe with a slight lean towards Dallas for what they're planning. How about Downtown? Again, I've only heard of Atlanta's infill which is impressive for such a sprawled city. I'd assume Dallas and Forth Worth have similar things going on. How about it?

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As a Dallas resident, I can speak about this...

Indeed, Trinity is commuter rail, and right now, the only connection from the TRE to DFW airport is via bus.  DART does have plans to extend a light rail line directly to the airport, but it's going to be at least 5-6 years before that rail line is completed (if not longer).

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I heard northwest light rail line will also connect to Love Field. Is this still hppening?

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While Atlanta does not have imminent plans to extend MARTA, they do exist. Plans call for the North line to be extended to N. Fulton county, the West line to be extended past the perimeter, and the East line out to who only knows where. I don't know when that will happen, currently DeKalb and Fulton county as well as the City of Atlanta are in a showdown with the state and region over the funding mechanism currently in place. Frankly, I don't care or even want them to be built. I would much rather see MARTA (or whatever agency assumes MARTA) concentrate on building systems that will address mobility in the urban core. Rail will never find a home in the suburbs of America's sunbelt cities. Let them stew in traffic. Rail belongs to the city. It takes a certain density to support transit, and the suburbs just don't come close. As for the poll, Dallas is Atlanta...just without the trees.

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I kind of agree wih you there. I also could care less about connecting rail to the burbs. You can keep the 8 lane highways with no sidewalks out there, while spend that extra money to build decent mass transit options in the city.

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I heard northwest light rail line will also connect to Love Field. Is this still hppening?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Depends on what you mean by "connect". Right now, there are a couple of proposals in the works...

1. Build part of the NW rail line underground and have a station at Love Field where you could step off the train and head straight for the terminal. This would add a significant cost to the project (at least 160 million dollars last I heard), and there are doubts that DART will receive enough funding to go through with the tunnel proposal (though I think it would be very cool).

2. Possibly more realistic considering the funding situation, I think DART is considering keeping the entire rail line above ground and using buses to shuttle people between one of the stations and Love Field airport (like they currently do with the Trinity Railway Express and DFW airport). The rail line will still eventually connect directly with DFW airport, though.

It's been a couple of months or so since I heard anything about DART's expansion plans, so I'm not 100% sure which way DART's currently leaning (or if what I just mentioned is still accurate :) )

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I voted Atlanta.

I loved them both, but it came down to city/state pride.

Atlanta has some plans to extend MARTA to Alpharetta (North Line), to Fulton Ind. Boulevard (West Line), anda second on at the airport. I don't how soon it will be before action is taken on any of these, though, as MARTA-get this-is in financial trouble.

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If we're reffering to 'metro' - then I think Dallas - Ft Worth is a more impressive metro. One critical item, is that Dallas has a sister city with Fort Worth which makes the metro an interesting place to be in. Certainly more dynamic synergy exists - which either is a plus or a minus for Dallas & Ft Worth. Those two cities either feed off each other or assist each other - though both central areas seem to be healthy.

But as for just 'city', I would choose Atlanta. But it's hard to judge similar cities - certainly I am biased towards Atlanta & b/c my wife's in-laws are in Dallas I am biased against Dallas. But I see good things occuring in Dallas overall.

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